Puncturing the mystery of Emma Smith, who loved Joseph but loathed polygamy | Episode 189

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By Mormon Land and The Salt Lake Tribune. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
She was church founder Joseph Smith’s first scribe. She created the first Latter-day Saint hymnal. She was the first president of the women’s Relief Society. She was, indeed, the faith’s first first lady. Yet Emma Smith, beloved wife of Joseph Smith, remains a mystery to many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Jennifer Reeder, a historian for the Utah-based church, seeks to break through that mystery and the myth in her new biography, appropriately titled “First: The Life and Faith of Emma Smith,” revealing Emma’s undying love for her prophet-husband and her feeling of betrayal at his practice of polygamy, exploring her painful loss of young babies and her lifelong commitment to surviving children, examining her fractious relationship with Brigham Young and the Utah church and her eventual embrace of the Reorganized Church (now called the Community of Christ). On this week’s show, Reeder talks about Emma Smith, the “elect lady” of early Mormonism.

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